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Conference papers

Knowledge of knots: shapes in action

Abstract : Logic is to natural language what knot theory is to natural knots. Logic is concerned with some cognitive performances; in particular, some natural language inferences are captured by various types of calculi (propositional, predicate, modal, deontic, quantum, probabilistic, etc.), which in turn may generate inferences that are arguably beyond natural logic abilities, or non-well synchronized therewith (eg. ex falso quodlibet, material implication). Mathematical knot theory accounts for some abilities - such as recognizing sameness or differences of some knots, and in turn generates a formalism for distinctions that common sense is blind to. Logic has proven useful in linguistics and in accounting for some aspects of reasoning, but which knotting performaces are there, over and beyond some intuitive discriminating abilities, that may require extensions or restrictions of the normative calculus of knots? Are they amenable to mathematical treatment? And what role is played in the game by mental representations? I shall draw from a corpus of techniques and practices to show to what extent compositionality, lexical and normative elements are present in natural knots, with the prospect of formally exploring an area of human competence that interfaces thought, perception and action in a complex fabric.
Keywords : knots topology reasoning
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Conference papers
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Contributor : Roberto Casati <>
Submitted on : Sunday, December 1, 2013 - 1:16:40 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, January 12, 2021 - 3:29:18 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Sunday, March 2, 2014 - 6:30:19 AM


  • HAL Id : ijn_00911999, version 1



Roberto Casati. Knowledge of knots: shapes in action. Shapes 2.0: The Shapes of Things / Universal Logic, Apr 2013, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. pp.3-20. ⟨ijn_00911999⟩



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